yoga inspiration


Blog post written by Eliza Skye

We didn’t come to earth to get anything. We came to awaken our full potential and infuse this dimension with divine light
— Derek Rydall

The sprouting of a seed is a slow and brutal event. The seed splits as new growth pushes through the old husk. The strong, fibrous exterior, which survived the long winter, breaks away to make space for the sprout of what will become a plant, a tree, a new life. What we have planted during the long winter now begins its process of emerging, arising from the destruction of what once was, a never ending process found both outside of ourselves and within. Spring is an exciting time, as new ideas burst forth from fertile ground. Many of us may feel the inner work that we have cultivated throughout the winter blossoming through the exterior that we maintain. As with the image of the seed sprouting, this can be an uncomfortable process of bringing the inner self and outer self into harmony. Observe what arises with compassion, and when judgement arises, see if you can find the voice behind that judgement. If great change is part of this emerging, try to identify and let go of

Camatkarasna (Wild Thing)

Also called “Rock Star”, Camatkarasana literally translates to “Struck with Wonder Pose”. This pose is a deep chest opener and also a very accessible arm balance. As with all backbending poses, Camatkarasna is a chest and heart opener, with a strong emphasis in external rotation of the shoulders when practiced correctly. Chest opening poses are known for alleviating mild depression, energizing the body and welcoming joy into the practitioner’s present experience. Wild Thing also has a strong emphasis on opening through the throat, hip flexors and quadriceps. Due to the arm balancing nature of this pose, there is an additional element of engaging the core and arms. Contraindications to this pose include sensitive wrists, any lower back pain or injury, and any rotator cuff injury. Camatkarasna can be modified on the forearms to alleviate pressure from the wrists. There are a lot of potential areas for injury when practicing Wild Thing, so please attend a yoga class with a certified instructor to learn how to enter and exit this pose safely and correctly. 

Lotus Mudra

The Ancient Egyptians observed that the lotus flower retracts into its murky watery home in the evening, arising in the morning to bloom, fragrant and colorful. They considered this process to be a reflection of the sun, setting into darkness every evening, unfailingly rising each morning. The Lotus Mudra symbolizes light emerging from darkness. Taking this mudra awakens the Anahata (Heart) Chakra, with the message that you can stay connected to your roots while simultaneously reaching for the light, and all of this can best be done with an open heart. You can focus on opening the heart to the joys of life, allowing yourself to feel grounded throughout the practice. The mudra is also known for allowing illusion and tension to fade away. It can also be used to cultivate love and affection, ease loneliness and bring in vital energy. 


Blog Post written by Eliza Skye

Life doesn’t get easier or more forgiving, we get stronger and more resilient.
— Steve Maraboli

Resilience is the ability to recover from situations that challenge us. Challenges are a part of life’s changing nature, and no matter how we carry ourselves, we will occasionally run into these trials. We can choose to meet difficulties in a number of ways, but resilience will allow us to emerge from them in a more powerful place. Resilience is not a trait that people either do or do not have. To be human is to be resilient. We cultivate resilience by developing specific behaviors, thoughts and actions that any human being is capable of. This does not mean that the path will be easy. In fact, the path of resilience is often riddled with obstacles and distress. However, we flourish when we choose to learn from those obstacles and not let the distress overcome our innate sense of joy. Meditation and spiritual practices, which we nurture in yoga classes, help improve the ease with which we can cultivate the trust that resilience requires from us. Spirituality relies on a deep trust in a higher meaning, especially as we witness suffering. A regular yoga practice teaches us how to control the body and the mind. We learn to be present with uncomfortable thoughts and physical sensations in the body. We also learn how to rise above them, into a place of the contented witness. These practices can facilitate a more holistic view of the world, the future, and the power we have in creating our own happiness.

Dhanurasana (Bow Pose)

Dhanurasana is named Bow Pose because the body looks like an archer’s bow, with the arms mirroring the strings. The reason dhanurasana can be such an intense pose is that it is a back bend that works against gravity. Instead of dropping into the pose, you must lift and engage the entire body to hold yourself upright. All backbends activate the Sympathetic Nervous System, which is known as the Stress Response. While chronic stress is never beneficial, putting the body into a stressful pose and mindfully breathing through it can be a very healthy practice. It teaches us about our physical resilience. All backbends are heart and chest openers, which helps undo the regular forward-reaching shapes we take in our daily lives. Other benefits include a deep stretch to the thighs and psoas, strengthening in the back muscles, and a gentle massage on the internal organs. Remember that you are ultimately in charge of how intense dhanurasana can become, so only go to your own edge in this pose and take breaks whenever you need to.

Shivalinga Mudra

Shivalinga Mudra is also called the Mudra of Resilience. The shape the hands create is similar to a mortar and pestle. The left hand is the mortar, with the fingers cupped together in front of the abdomen. The right hand rests in the bowl that the left hand makes, with the right thumb extended toward the sky. After finding this shape, call to mind a situation that tests the strength of your resilience and mentally place it into the left hand. Slowly begin to circle the right hand, “grinding” that thing away. You can even blow away the imaginary dust that is left behind in your left hand bowl. The right hand also represents the masculine and destructive force of Shiva. Destruction is an aspect of change, however unpleasant the word feels to us. In order to enact a conscious change, we can choose to take charge of what we would like to destroy. In addition to cultivating resilience, this mudra helps alleviate depression and increase energy. You can do it as often as you like, though it is recommended to practice Shivalinga Mudra twice a day for four minutes.